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A deuterium magnetic resonance study of chain disorder in lamellar phases of mixed chain length Tang, Wendy Wai Sau


Deuterium nmr is used to investigate the temperature dependence of the orientational order of small amounts of perdeuterated potassium carboxylates of differing chain lengths dissolved as guests in the protiated host potassium paimitate. Additionally, samples containing lipids of a single chain length equal to that of each guest are studied for comparison. Long chain guests have the same orientational order as the host up to the 15th position, while the rest of the chain is orientationally disordered. Short chain guests are restricted inside the host and there is less interaction of the polar head with water than in the single chain length samples. Phase separation involving a rapid exchange of molecules between a lamellar phase and a possibly isotropic phase yields unexpectedly low splittings for the short chain guests at lower temperature and with higher water content.

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